[3 Lessons] How To Get Well-Paid To Write Copy

Even if you suck at Engrish, you can "work" from home, at a Starbucks, or your mobile phone.

This is what's possible when you get copywriting jobs.

But the question is... how?

How can you get paid to write on your own, when you want, and at a pace that's comfortable for you?

Getting paid to write changed my life (in a good way); perhaps today, I can make the same thing happen to you—too.

Now I've learned several lessons over the years; lessons that'll save you time and money, if you heed my words.

So listen up!

Here are some lessons for getting paid well to write, even if you dropped out of high school.

1. Don't Write For Free (In Most Cases)

Don't get fooled by cheapskates promising you "exposure", credibility, or the promise of future work.

Getting zilch to write is a baaaaad way to start a working relationship with your client, because...

  • you'll be known as the guy (or gal) who writes for free,
  • your work will stink (because you're not earning tangible for it),
  • and you'll struggle with getting paid a real wage down the road.

The only variation of this rule is if you have the chance to work for someone major; a credible, heavy-hitter.

Example

If you wanted to write copy in the self-help "niche" and you had the opportunity to write copy for Tony Robbins—then do it!

2. Seek Long-term Working Relationships, Not One-Off Projects

This connects with lesson 1 (not writing for free), because the key to getting paid-well to write is to continue to work for the same client(s).

Most well-paid copywriters I know only have a small number of clients (some of them just write for one).

Copywriters who go from gig to gig, get paid peanuts... and some of them "master" the art of bleeding the client during the initial sale, then falling back into the shadows after their first project bombs.

Tis' better to go for long-term projects and ongoing relationships with your client(s).

Not only is it better for your checking account, your skills'll improve; you'll have a better understanding of the market as you continue to work within it over time.

3. Don't Undercharge

Whatever you think is a "comfortable" rate is too low.

The truth is, there is no standard or market rate for copy; I've seen prices range from $500 to $50,000 for a sales page, for example.

But this isn't a lesson about what rate you should charge, this is about avoiding the mistake of undercharging.

What I mean is... whatever you think is a "good" rate for your work, consider the fact that

  • ...you'll likely be doing more than writing copy, like consulting on the project, sharing ideas about the market, and "fixing" things as they come up—you should consider this when setting your rate!
  • you want to set a high expectation for you work, which makes your copy perceived as valuable (which, it is—even if you're not the world's best copywriter)—you should consider this when setting your rate!
  • you have rent to pay, food to purchase, and people to take care of (including yourself)—you should consider this when setting your rate!

Bottom line: don't let your emotions take control when setting your rate; think logically about the entire project and your livelihood, first.

These three lessons are not about milking the client.

I'm sharing them because—based on personal experience—the best way to write great copy is knowing you're being well-compensated for your expertise.

It's not only best for you, it's best for the client—too!

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CopywritingRaymond Duke